Swedish state colleges might drop ancient and medieval history from the curriculum to make room for postmodernism and “democratic values,” in response to a controversial new proposal that has enraged many Swedes, native media studies.
The history of “ancient civilizations, from prehistoric instances to round 1700” is absent in a proposed new curriculum for Swedish state major colleges in favor of give attention to fashionable history and social sciences, Anna Westerholm, the Swedish National Agency for Education’s curriculum division head, informed Svenska Dagbladet on Thursday. Tight class schedules go away no room for it, she mentioned.
History has already been de-prioritized by way of “intensive deletions,” in response to SvD, and formative eras just like the Roman Empire and the Viking Age will now be eliminated altogether in favor of topics like immigration, the setting, local weather, “norm-challenging,” vital idea, “democratic values,” and gender roles. The emphasis will likely be on a “postmodernist view” of society, quite than the classical philosophical custom, SvD studies, and history lessons will give attention to Western colonialism, nationalism, and the slave commerce.
Westerholm reasoned that making an attempt to squeeze an excessive amount of history into the school yr usually forces lecturers to chop off instruction earlier than they even make it to World War II – that means they miss out on studying in regards to the post-war interval. Additionally, lecturers and college students have complained that grading standards are “tough to interpret” and “lengthy and sophisticated.”
“It hurts us too,” she sympathized, insisting the company had finished a “pretty thorough examination of how content material and hours match” and located that eradicating ancient and medieval history “hurts the least.”
The thought has incensed professors and academic professionals. History professor Dick Harrison, chatting with Aftonbladet, referred to as the thought “weird and baffling,” whereas Dagens Nyheter literature critic Maria Schottenius referred to as it “loopy” and warned it might deprive college students of a connection to their heritage.
“If you haven’t any information of the ancient, you possibly can don’t have any respect for the long run both,” social science and ancient tradition scholar Jenny Wallensten, of the Swedish Institute in Athens, informed SvD, calling the brand new proposal “absurd.”
“To erase antiquity from history instructing? Unfortunate,” former Minister of Education Jan Björklund tweeted, including that “the identical proposal got here once I was a minister, however I finished it.”
While college students have the choice of learning ancient history in excessive school, these enrolled in vocational applications get little or no publicity to it, Westerholm admits.
The new curriculum additionally emphasizes the studying of Norwegian and Danish texts and contains dialogue of honor killings in social research. Vocational schooling is deemphasized and college students are given fewer electives, in response to Swedish outlet Bohusläningen, whereas extra hours are dedicated to arithmetic and sports activities.